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Old 12-05-2010, 11:43 PM
 
Location: Bay View, Milwaukee
2,362 posts, read 4,417,717 times
Reputation: 3162

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My partner and I will be visiting New Orleans in Dec/Jan for several days, but we plan to rent a car for a couple of days so we can get a glimpse of Cajun Country and the River Road. We'll only have 2.5 days for this, so obviously our glimpse will be superficial, but we're hoping it'll provide a base of knowledge for another trip someday.

Does this itinerary seem like too much?:

Day One (half day): from New Orleans to New Iberia area via Houma
Day Two: New Iberia area to St. Francisville
Day Three: St. Francisville to New Orleans via River Road

* Is St. Francisville worth the drive and expense? It sounds like a nice place, but if we decide not to go, our itinerary will chart a more efficient and circular course.

* I know we can't begin to scrape the surface of Cajun Country in just 1.5 days, so what would we do well to focus on? On the New Iberia-to-St. Francisville drive I'm looking at stops at St. Martinville and Breaux Bridge (and possibly Opelousas if there's time), but would we be better off considering another string of places to visit? We don't expect to tour swamps, hike parks, and the like, but it would be nice to walk around a couple of historic downtowns and maybe drive through some swampland areas.

* Realistically, on the third day, we expect to be able to look around St. Francisville (if we actually keep it on the itinerary) and visit one plantation along River Road. Is even this too ambitious?

* Is it a mistake to bypass the larger cities Lafayette and Baton Rouge? Perhaps we should stay over in Lafayette instead of New Iberia?

Thanks for your ideas on this. Ideally, we'd have a lot more time to explore the area, but sadly, we can't do that this time around. Any help about what to emphasize and downplay is much appreciated.
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Old 12-06-2010, 12:28 AM
 
Location: Pereira, Colombia
1,273 posts, read 2,171,629 times
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I don't think your agenda sounds too bold, but you have to get going early and expect to not finish everything until the evening. Other than that, it's possible. St. Francisville is a really nice place, I would definitely recommend putting it on your list in spite of the extra driving. New Iberia has a nice old downtown and some really nice estates, but don't spend the night there. You are selling yourself seriously short by not spending time in Lafayette. Look for hotels in the downtown Lafayette area and see how authentic Cajun/Creole charm and friendliness meshes with a city of 100,000+ (can feel bigger with all there is to do there) and rapidly growing. To get the most authentic experience, check out the Blue Moon Guesthouse. You have to eat at Suire's Grocery south of Kaplan! It may be 30 minutes from Lafayette each way but you will thank me later. You cannot find plate lunches that are better ANYWHERE! May I recommend either the Shrimp and Egg Stew or the Turtle Sauce Piquante!
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Old 12-06-2010, 02:38 AM
 
Location: Lafayette, La
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Also be sure to sample the boudin at best stop or even better dons specialty meats right off the Scott exit just west of Lafayette. Oh yeah and start off the morning with some meche's donuts
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Old 12-07-2010, 09:51 PM
 
Location: Bay View, Milwaukee
2,362 posts, read 4,417,717 times
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Thanks for the info and recs; they've been duly noted. I think the itinerary will wind up looking more like this now:

Day One (half day): from New Orleans to Lafayette with stops in Houma and New Iberia. Dinner, drinks, and overnight in Lafayette
Day Two: Lafayette area--roadtrip thru Breaux Bridge/St. Martinville, Abbeville, Kaplan, etc. Overnight in St. Francisville
Day Three: St. Francisville (morning) to New Orleans via River Road (afternoon).

I wish we could spend more time getting to know one specific place, but this will have to do for now. Already thinking about the next visit!
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:06 PM
 
Location: Youngsville, LA
431 posts, read 968,411 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quijote View Post
Thanks for the info and recs; they've been duly noted. I think the itinerary will wind up looking more like this now:

Day One (half day): from New Orleans to Lafayette with stops in Houma and New Iberia. Dinner, drinks, and overnight in Lafayette
Day Two: Lafayette area--roadtrip thru Breaux Bridge/St. Martinville, Abbeville, Kaplan, etc. Overnight in St. Francisville
Day Three: St. Francisville (morning) to New Orleans via River Road (afternoon).

I wish we could spend more time getting to know one specific place, but this will have to do for now. Already thinking about the next visit!
Since you are taking highway 90 from New Orleans to Acadiana, you should (time permitting) consider a small detour to Avery Island. It's not "that" far off the path, but I think you would find it worthwhile.
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Old 12-08-2010, 04:37 AM
 
Location: Lafayette, La
2,047 posts, read 4,702,764 times
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YES.
Go to Avery island.
Although its MUCH better in Springtime when the birds are in the rookery.
Thousands of egrets next over there and there is an exotic plants garden that McIlhenny set up many years ago on the island that is well worth seeing.
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Old 12-08-2010, 11:43 AM
 
1 posts, read 2,258 times
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This thread answers some of my questions, but I have a bit more time and would start travel 12/27 to the new year. Would anyone also have recommendations of how and where it is best to add a bit of Zydeco music experience to the mix? I'm with someone who has never been to LA, and so this is his first foray and I want him to really enjoy it. Thanks for your help.
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Old 12-08-2010, 07:13 PM
 
Location: Pereira, Colombia
1,273 posts, read 2,171,629 times
Reputation: 1405
Quote:
Originally Posted by WannaTravelsoon View Post
This thread answers some of my questions, but I have a bit more time and would start travel 12/27 to the new year. Would anyone also have recommendations of how and where it is best to add a bit of Zydeco music experience to the mix? I'm with someone who has never been to LA, and so this is his first foray and I want him to really enjoy it. Thanks for your help.

North Lafayette has places, as well as Opelousas and Carencro. The place that I like to go is El Sid-O's which is on the northside of Lafayette. Very authentic! You'll see things in there you didn't think existed, like black cowboys and black harley biker clubs! Check them out first and see if they have anybody playing during your stay. My personal favorite acts are Keith Frank as well as Terry and the Zydeco Bad Boys.
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